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The Robot

Each year as part of the FIRST Robotics Competition, Team 228 must build an entirely new robot from scratch. Six long weeks of designing, machining, fabricating, wiring, and programming go into the creation of our team's robots. When the robot is shipped at the end of each build season, we are hardly done. We always seek to improve our robots, to add new features, to make our drive trains faster, our arms more powerful, and our programming more extensive during the official Fix-It windows or after the competitions during the post-season.

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Learn more about Gus Five

Team 228: Gus Five

2003 was a year of firsts for both Team 228 and our robots. 2003 was the first year in a four-year reign in which we primarily used 80/20 for our robot chassis, the first that we attended a regional competition other than the UTC New England Regional, and the first Ben Piecuch came to volunteer his mechanical engineering support.

Once of the strengths of our robot in 2003 was our autonomous mode. 2003 was the first year that a true autonomous mode had been introduced into FIRST. That year, Team 228's robot was often the first robot to the stack of boxes, knocking them down onto our side of the playing field.

Strengths and Weaknesses:

Team 228: Gus Five

As this robot was originally designed, it could have stacked up to seven boxes high during the match. However, due to the fact that Stack Attack had quickly degerated from a stacking game to a knocking boxes over/king of the hill type of game, our awesome arm design was of nu further use to the team and was largely dismantled. In it's place, a short "stub" of the arm was left to aid in the autonomous mode of knocking down the row of boxes. Eventually, "Stub" would become the nickname of our 2003 robot.

Another weakness of our 2003 robot were the robot transmissions and drive team. While our drive train design would have worked if we had used a different motor (such as the CIM motor), the drill motors would constantly "pop" our circuit breakers, causing our robot to "die" for several seconds until the auto-reset feature kicked in.

Quick Stats

Drive Train

Transmissions: 2x Two-Speed Bosch Drill Transmission
Speed: 7.5 ft/sec
Motors: 2x Bosch Drill Motor
Setup: 4WD, 2x 8" customized Skyway wheel and 2x Custom designed omni-wheels


Primary: Originally designed to stack boxes
Secondary: Get onto the ramp at the end of the match
Loading: Can pick up boxes from anywhere
Capacity: Can pick up a small stack of boxes
Autonomous: Drive out and knock down boxes onto your side of the playing field


Strategy: Block teams from getting on ramp, knock down stacks

Drive Team

Coach: Steve (senior)
Driver: Ryan Morin (sophomore)
Operator: "Pinky" (senior)
Human Player: Samantha Harkness (freshman)

Robot Photos

Here are several photos of our 2003 robot, Gus Five, chosen randomly from our Photo Galleries. To view more photos of this robot, please visit the "gus5" photo gallery tag page.

Ryan and Gary Morin with Gus 5
2003 New Jersey Regional Competition
2003 New Jersey Regional - FRC Robot Inspection
2003 New Jersey Regional - On the Ramp
Team 228's 2004 Parade Float
2003 UTC New England Regional Competition
2003 New Jersey Regional - Robotics Competition pits
2004 FRC Build Season - Prototype Wings to Corral Balls
2003 UTC New England Regional Competition
2003 New Jersey Regional - Autonomous Mode
2003 New Jersey Regional - Match Queuing
2003 New Jersey Regional - Pit

Browse through more of the 71 photos of Gus Five.

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There were 1 robot(s) built for the 2003 competition season.

About the Kit Of Parts

Every year immediately following the FRC Kickoff Event, every FRC team receives a standard Kit Of Parts. Contained in two totes, this single Kit contains enough motors, wheels, pneumatics, and electronics to build a basic robot. From this, teams can add additional components or raw materials, such as gears, roller chain, timing belts, aluminum, or polycarbonate (to name a few common additions) as governed by the game manual to build their final robot.

FIRST Robotics Competition Kit of Parts

About Gus

Gus Robotics Team 228 was founded in 1999 to bring the excitement and inspiration of the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) to students from Meriden, CT. Since then, our program has grown into a nationally-recognized robotics team for students from five different high schools in Meriden and Wallingford, CT.

Through our involvement in FRC and VRC, we introduce and inspire students to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Mentors from a wide variety of fields including teaching, engineering (mechanical, electrical, robotics), computer science, machinists, technicians, business executives and more, teach students relevant real-world experience and applications.

We've also built strong relationships with our local school district, businesses and organizations to help provide our students the best possible experience; these sponsors are crucial to our long-term success.

Recent graduates from our program have won over quarter million dollars in scholarships, and have gone onto a variety of careers in STEM fields.